Help for unpaid carers | Time Out respite

A day out for your loved one. Time Out for you.

Travellers Aid provides free respite help for unpaid carers through its dedicated Time Out program.


How does the Time Out respite service support unpaid carers?

Time Out is a free respite service designed to help unpaid carers. Specially trained Travellers Aid volunteers and staff members support your parent, partner, adult child or other family member to attend appointments or enjoy an outing of their choice while you get to have time to yourself or with your loved one, without having to act as their carer.

Choose one of our ready-to-go Time Out packages, or talk to us about creating respite support to meet your individual needs.

“Every step of the way I felt safe and cared for. I would not have had the courage to go it alone.” – Margaret, Time Out service user

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Who can get Time Out respite?

If you’re an unpaid carer, Time Out is designed for you! You don’t need to be registered with any government agency or receive a government support package (HACC, CHSP, NDIS etc) to access the free Time Out service. To be eligible for Time Out, service users must:

  • Be aged over 18 years or accompanied by a parent/legal guardian,
  • Have their own transport costs covered,
  • Be an unpaid carer, or care recipient, and
  • Be attending an activity that is within Victoria and accessible by public transport.


What level of care is available through the Time Out service?

On receiving your booking request, Travellers Aid carefully matches the service user with a screened and suitably trained volunteer or staff member. Rest assured that our Time Out service puts safety first and is backed by our experience in assisting travellers for more than 100 years.

To ensure we have enough time to screen and match the most suitable person for your needs, we prefer 3 business days’ notice for bookings.

While we can provide limited personal care, such as meal assistance, please see the note below on the things Travellers Aid is unable to assist with.


How does Time Out respite help unpaid carers?

The choice is yours! Use Time Out to attend to your own personal needs or take advantage of having an extra person on hand to attend an appointment or enjoy an outing with your loved one without needing to act as their carer.

Using public transport, we can accompany people to and from:

  • Attractions and special events,
  • Medical or other personal care appointments,
  • Social activities,
  • Education or work events, and
  • Other day-to-day activities.

We can be there as an added support for the carer or as the replacement carer.

Can I use the Time Out service for appointments?

Yes you can. Perhaps the care recipient needs to attend an appointment or social activity. Or they might be after a fun day out visiting an attraction or special event. Flexibility is in our DNA at Travellers Aid.

Our trained staff and volunteers can meet you at a public transport hub in Melbourne, Geelong or Seymour and accompany you to and from your chosen destination.

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Not quite sure what you’d like to do?

Here’s our current range of ready-to-go Time Out packages.

  • Elvis: Direct from Graceland exhibition at Bendigo Art Gallery,
  • Triobike tour of the artworks and history of Melbourne’s Docklands precinct,
  • A trip across the bay with a Port Phillip Ferries, and
  • A day among the animals at Melbourne Zoo.


Don’t forget that you, the carer, are welcome to come, too. Except with Time Out it’s your day off!

When you make your booking, let us know if you need us to be the replacement carer or assisting as added support on the day.

Please note: the popularity of the Elvis: Direct from Graceland exhibit means Bendigo Art Gallery is experiencing a high volume of visitors. Gallery staff suggest Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons are best if mobility is a consideration. For accessibility information please visit the Bendigo Art Gallery website.


Can I create a customised Time Out experience?

Absolutely! If you can get there using public transport, Travellers Aid can assist.

Travellers Aid is experienced in offering flexible solutions to help ensure unpaid carers’ and care recipients’ preferences and needs are met.

Galleries, concerts, retail therapy, garden picnics, movies, or just a walk in the park; we’re here to ensure your day out is safe and memorable.


What costs does the free Time Out service cover?

Time Out is supported by the Victorian Government to assist unpaid carers and the people they care for. It covers the cost of providing a Travellers Aid volunteer on the day, as well as their travel costs on the day. 

Service users will need to cover their own travel costs, as well as the cost of any additional ticketed activities for themselves and the Travellers Aid volunteer or staff member.


Sounds great! Tell me how to book some Time Out.

Step 1: Download the Service Intake Form and Booking Form from our website. These documents contain all the questions you’ll be asked over the phone so you can be ready when you make the booking call.

Step 2: Call Travellers Aid on 1300 700 399 with the following information:

  • Preferred activity,
  • Preferred date and time,
  • Details of the care recipient, including assessment information as outlined in the forms downloaded in Step 1. Please allow up to 30 minutes for this phone call.
  • Companion Card details.

Step 3: Travellers Aid will put a call out to their volunteers to see who is available and find a match.

Step 4: When a suitable volunteer is found, Travellers Aid will contact you to confirm your booking.

Step 5: On the day, meet your Time Out volunteer at the pre-arranged location.

Step 6: Enjoy your Time Out!

To ensure we have enough time to screen and match the most suitable volunteer or staff member for your needs, we prefer 3 business days’ notice for bookings. We will always try our best to accommodate late notice bookings. Our friendly team will respond to your booking request between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

For more information, call 1300 700 399 to speak to one of our friendly staff or email

Click here to view our Booking Form

Click here to view our Service Intake Form


Time Out partners | supporting unpaid carers

A shout out to our wonderful supporters for helping us create great Time Out experiences to support unpaid carers and the people they care for.


If you’d like to partner with us, contact Travellers Aid and ask to speak with our Operations Manager about how your organisation can be part of the Time Out respite service.


A note on what Travellers Aid can’t assist with

All Travellers Aid volunteers and staff delivering the service are screened and suitably trained however we are unable to offer the following:

    • Travel interstate and overseas  
    • PEG (percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube) feeding 
    • Change table assist if there is only one staff member present 
    • Administration of any medication or monitoring self-medication
    • Changing dressings
    • Showering or bathing
    • Shaving, hair care, nail care, or other general grooming
    • Any exercise or therapy programs
    • Any in home care or support and overnight care
    • Home pickups. Meeting locations must be in a public place e.g. major transport hub
    • Wheelchair repairs and maintenance, except for pumping up of tyres
    • Counselling services.